Decades of hard work, careful financial planning for retirement, and providing for loved ones in your estate plan – all of these things can be ruined by the extraordinary cost of long-term care. The average cost of a nursing home or assisted-living facility can easily exceed $90,000 in Florida and $145,000 in Connecticut. Contrary to what many people believe, Medicare will only cover those costs for a relatively brief period of time and the amount of the coverage is limited.
After the expiration of Medicare benefits (generally no more than 100 days after being discharged from a hospital), you will have to use your own assets to pay for the cost of staying in the facility until you become eligible for Medicaid.
Medicaid (also known as “Title 19”) is a jointly funded, Federal and State health insurance program for low-income and needy people. For some programs Medicaid covers the low income population; children; the aged, blind, and/or disabled; and other people who are eligible to receive federally assisted income maintenance payments. Medicaid will cover the costs of long term care after the income and asset eligibility requirements are met.
Without careful planning, particularly planning that can ensure eligibility for Medicaid benefits, the assets you’ve set aside for your retirement and for your heirs could be consumed by astronomical costs of long-term care.
Medicaid planning is a critical part of a comprehensive strategy developed by your attorney to provide necessary care for seniors without dissipating assets that could be used for retirement, the needs of a healthy spouse, or passed on to loved ones. However, qualifying for Medicaid benefits that can cover long-term care costs is complicated, and any number of missteps could make a difficult financial situation even worse.
At the Watts Law Office, we have the experience, knowledge, and insight to guide our clients through the complex web of laws, rules, and regulations that govern Medicaid eligibility. Since Medicaid is a needs-based program designed to provide medical care and assistance for low-income individuals, eligibility for the benefits that can pay for long-term care is based upon your available assets. Medicaid planning involves structuring your assets and liabilities in such a way that they are excluded from the calculations used to determine Medicaid eligibility.
There are resources available to provide for your long-term care needs and we can help you access those resources. At the Watts Law Office we will work closely with you to integrate Medicaid planning into a complete estate plan so that you get the care you need while at the same time preserving your assets. If you’d like to learn more about how we can help you with your long-term care and Medicaid planning, please contact the firm to arrange for a consultation.
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